The Sex Offenders Act 2001 contains a comprehensive series of provisions aimed at protecting children and other persons. Part 2 of the Act makes persons convicted of a range of sexual offences subject to notification requirements. The provisions of the Act also extend to any offenders convicted abroad of the same range of sexual offences who enter the State.
All offenders subject to the notification requirements are monitored by the Sex Offender Management and Intelligence Unit (SOMIU) at the Garda National Bureau of Criminal Investigation. The Unit is supported by Garda Inspectors nominated in each Garda Division throughout the State. I am informed that the nominated Inspector in each Division has access to all necessary resources within his/her Division to assist him/her in carrying out his/her duties.
Where An Garda Síochána becomes aware that an offender subject to the notification requirements has breached those requirements, appropriate action is taken, including circulation through PULSE of their information, as well as inquiries to identify their current whereabouts. I am confident that the appropriate level of monitoring is carried out by An Garda Síochána and that all breaches of the requirements which come to notice are pursued.
In this regard, I am informed by the Garda authorities that, to 12 July, 2012, there were 1,204 persons subject to the requirements of Part 2 of the Act. I am further informed that there have been 33 prosecutions for offences contrary to Part 2 of the Act to date in 2012.
I am also informed that when the Garda authorities become aware that a convicted sex offender has left or is intending to leave the State, the Sex Offender Management and Intelligence Unit ensures that the relevant law enforcement agency in the country of destination is advised via Interpol.